Richard Nixon

John W. Pinkerton

Richard Milhous Nixon, our 37st President….


A well-meaning friend of mine once asked, “What did Nixon ever do?”  He seemed a bit flummoxed when I replied, “For one thing, he opened China.”

People today look at Nixon as a failed President.  Maybe a failed man, but his Presidency was not without accomplishments.

During his administration, the Environmental Protection Agency was created, the Twenty-Sixth Amendment was ratified, the SALT agreement was signed, China was opened to  the West, and the Vietnam War ended.

After years of neglect of the environment, Richard Nixon proposed the Environmental Protection Agency to protect the natural environment for future generations.

At the height of the Cold War with the Soviet Union, 1972,  the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty was signed by President Nixon and Leonid Brezhnev which was a major step toward limiting nuclear weapons and  lessening the tensions of the Cold War.

In 1972 Nixon traveled to China and met with Chinese Premier Zhou Enial.  This visit ended years of not having a diplomatic relation with China, undoubtedly his greatest achievement.

Our involvement in Vietnam began under the Eisenhower administration, continued through the Kennedy administration and the Johnson administration and finally ended with the Paris Peace Accords of 1973.  The North Vietnamese violated the terms and our departure from South Vietnam and our departure was extremely ugly.  Ugly, but Nixon managed to extract the US from a horrible war.

When he was president, the Twenty-Sixth Amendment which gave 18-year-olds the right to vote, was ratified.

I've always had a soft spot in my heart for Nixon.  He was not a handsome man.  He was a man with humble beginnings: he was born into a middle class family in Yorba Linda, California, and went to Whittier College and Duke University School of Law.

Richard Nixon was a self-made man.

His greatest asset was his intelligence.  That's why I couldn't believe that he was actually involved in a cover-up of Watergate.

After years of being attacked by his political enemies and a hostile press, he finally lost his judgment.

Today it is doubtful that he would have to resign in the face of impeachment threats.  Mr. Republican, Barry Goldwater, urged Nixon in no uncertain terms to resign.  It was the right thing to do.  Clinton survived personal misconduct and, more importantly, lying about it in court.  Obama has violated Constitutional law numerous times, and he has survived.

Don't dismiss Richard Nixon as a failed President; dismiss him, if you must, as a failed man.  His accomplishments were significant.

Richard Nixon was a mean-spirited public figure, not popular with the press.  He was definitely not “cool,” but he was intelligent and knowledgeable on national and international affairs and willing to take bold steps on behalf of the country.

I hope our next President has these same qualities.


HOME page>                  NEW STUFF page> 
          WRITING CONTENT page>       GUEST ARTISTS page>Home_1.htmlNew_Stuff.htmlEssays.htmlGuest_Artists.htmlshapeimage_1_link_0shapeimage_1_link_1shapeimage_1_link_2shapeimage_1_link_3